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Episode #039 – The Off-Road Ford GT, New Jaguars, Stupid Tech

This week Dan and Sam have both recently driven the off-road specialist from Ford Performance, the F-150 Raptor. It’s got visual presence and a great engine, but would your humble hosts actually want to own one? Sam has also driven the Hyundai Elantra Sport, but unlike the manual transmission version Dan drove a few weeks ago, this one had the seven-speed dual clutch transmission. Volvo has revealed the new XC40 compact crossover with a new subscription leasing program that turns out to be very similar to Apple’s iPhone upgrade program. Jaguar brought most of its 2018 model lineup including the […]

wheelbearings podcast episode 39

Wheelbearings Podcast episode 38

Episode #038 – Grand Touring, Fun Hybrids, Frankfurt and Mazda Cleverness

The guys return after a week away with Dan getting his turn at the Kia Niro while Sam tours in the Lexus LC500. We review the highlights of  the Frankfurt Motor Show plus the hideous BMW X7, discuss what the NTSB had to say about a fatal Tesla crash, ponder stolen VW diesels and marvel at the creativity of Mazda’s engineers. We also answer some really old voice mails. Links Mazda SkyActiv-X Tech Stolen VW diesels NTSB on Tesla and automated driving Slimmed down federal guidelines on automated driving Frankfurt 2017 Highlights Lexus LC500 Review Kia Niro Review  

Episode #037 – Hot Hondas, Acuras, Hyundais, Pizzas and A Not-so Hot Mitsubishi

This week we talk about lots of the vehicles we’ve recently driven. Sam samples a pair of very different Acura hybrids with some shared hardware. He then heads to the track to play with the hottest Civic ever the Type-R and talks with product planner Rob Keogh. Dan gets in the decidedly mediocre Mitsubishi Outlander GT. The Hyundai Elantra GT Sport is one of the most refined cars yet from the ever-improving Korean brand but is it better than a GTI? Finally, Ford and Domino’s hook up to try out autonomous pizza delivery. Domino’s Takes High-Tech Pizza Delivery To Level […]

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Episode #036 – Rome Isn’t Burning, Why Skip The VCs? & Diesel Crossovers

The guys are back with a regular episode wherein we drive sibling vehicles from Korea, the Hyundai Elantra Sport and Kia Niro FE. Sam was wiped out last week after a whirlwind trip to San Francisco for the City of Tomorrow symposium hosted by Ford. While there he got the chance to talk with Bryan Salesky, one of the most experienced software engineers working on automated vehicles. Fiat Chrysler is also trying to get a foothold in the automated driving space while rumors of a Chinese acquisition swirl. Meanwhile GM still hopes that diesel can give them a competitive edge […]

Special Episode: NEMPA MIT Technology Conference – “Stronger, Lighter, Faster”

  Sam is recovering from a redeye flight, but we’ll be recording the next episode soon. In the meantime, we’re sharing recordings made during the New England Motor Press Association MIT Technology Conference. Held annually at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, this year’s theme was Lighter, Stronger, Faster. A panel discussion was introduced by Bryan Reimer, the Associate Director for the New England University Transportation Center at MIT. The full panel included Doctor Jody Hall, Vice President of the automotive market for the Steel Market Development Institute, David Paratore, President and CEO of NanoSteel, Richard Roth, director of the Materials […]

Jody Hall, David Paratore, speak at the NEMPA MIT conference. Wheelbearings Special Episode

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Episode #035 – Dull Edge, Travis Gets Sued, Mazda Innovates

This week, Sam is again driving a Mazda Miata with brilliant steering while Dan fights the steering in the Ford Edge Sport. Another Hespen Rally is in the books and Sam goes off on a tangent about what happens to engineering development vehicles. Mazda announces the first production HCCI engine for 2019 and one of Uber’s biggest investors sues former CEO Travis Kalanick and guys try to give some advice on what kind of car should replace a VW GTI. Colin Sultan of 3M explains what the inventor of post-it notes is doing to enable automated and connected vehicles. Links […]

Episode #034 – AMG Roadtripping, More Miata Love and EV Frustration

  This week Dan takes his turn in the Mazda Miata RF while Sam does a road trip to the Center for Automotive Research Management Briefing Seminars in the Mercedes-AMG E43. While at MBS Sam talked with Nvidia’s director of automotive, Danny Shapiro, heard Mazda SVP Robert Davis extol the virtues of internal combustion and saw his friend Bob Gritzenger struggle with EV charging infrastructure in northern Michigan. Links Mazda Miata RF  Charging an EV on Blue Highways Mazda Dissing EVs Sam’s new monthly column for Automotive Engineering

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Episode #033 – Faster, Slower, Fix It Now or Fix It Later

This week Sam is in the slightly quicker Civic, the Si sedan, Dan stays on-road in the off-road Jeep Compass and the guys delve into fixing diesel Volkswagens, regulations for automated driving and whether anyone will ever make any money on self-driving software. Also, Waze comes to Android Auto, the end of big cars and a contemplation on how to fix Lincoln. Links The automated driving economy turns into the app store economy Who’s ultimately responsible for fixing recalled Volkswagen diesels Will automated cars cost $400,000? Spoiler alert, no.

Episode #32 – Convertibles, Hybrids, Not Self-Driving and Comcast Hate

This week Sam has driven Hyundai Ioniq Hybrid and compares the latest Mazda Miata to the original. Dan spends the week with a very different kind of convertible, the Mustang GT. When the new Nissan Leaf arrives this fall, it will have e-pedal for strong regenerative braking and ProPilot Assist which is automated but not self-driving. Before some listener questions, the guys dive into the latest ploy by Comcast to remain the most hated company in America. Links Nissan ProPilot Assist Preview – It’s Automated But Not Self-Driving We Should Welcome The E-Pedal In The New Nissan Leaf, But It’s […]

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Episode #31 – Absolutely Mainstream to Utterly Extreme

  This week Sam and Dan discuss the merits of the Subaru Impreza vs the Mistubishi Outlander Sport, the Merccedes-AMG GLA45, the all-new 2018 Honda Accord, the Aston Martin Valkyrie and a preview of the 2017 Concours de’Elegance of America.  Don’t forget to join the Hespen Rally if you are in Michigan on August 6, 2017. Links Concours de’Elegance of America 2018 Honda Accord and more on the Accord Aston Martin Valkyrie Hespen Rally